Pakistani pop star #Ali-Zafar, currently busy putting together charity rock concerts for flood victims in Pakistan, is taken aback to hear he is doing a #Yash-Raj-Films directed by Ali Abbas Zafar.
Says Ali, “The announcement, if it came from the production house, is premature. I have not signed the film you mentioned. I have not signed any film after #Tere-Bin-Laden. I have not even met the producer Aditya Chopra or the director Ali Abbas Zafar. Yes, we’ve spoken about the film. And I’ve liked my role. We’ll meet when I come to Mumbai this week.”
Ali surprises you even more by admitting that he has heard the script on the internet. “The director narrated the script to me on Skype! All our communication so far has been virtual. I like the sound of the role. It is in the comic space. I guess they thought of me for the part because of my comic timing in #Tere-Bin-Laden.
Is the pop star aware that the role was apparently offered to #Riteish-Deshmukh who generally plays supporting roles? Ali says he isn’t aware of the role’s past. But he is determined not to play supporting roles. “Aditya Chopra spoke to me for a long time, convinced me that it’s a role equal to Imran Khan’s. I am very clear on this issue and I told Aditya that I won’t play any secondary or supporting roles. He has assured me it’s a parallel role (to #Imran-Khan).”
However, #Ali-Zafar will take a call only when he meets the producer and director in Mumbai.
He also knows that a leading lady is yet to be finalized for him. That should be a dead giveaway on how “parallel” Ali’s role is to Imran’s.
Says the pop icon, “I’ve yet to decide on which films to do in Mumbai. But yes, I’m coming to Mumbai next week, although I am neck-deep at the moment organizing relief concerts here in Pakistan after the floods which are said to be the worst catastrophe ever.”
Ali has invited international pop stars Bono and Sting to join him on stage for a charity concert in Lahore. “But since I plan to have all these concerts only after Eid (this being the period of abstinence the Ramzan), I can take a break to come to Mumbai.” Relocation to Mumbai is a serious possibility. For the moment, #Ali-Zafar has applied for a special visa. “So I can move in and out of Pakistan and India freely. At the moment I am getting only multiple visas… Here, in Lahore, I am asked if I’ve encountered any hostility in India. But I’ve received only love everywhere in Mumbai,” he ends.